Christmas is the largest gift-giving holiday and many of us often break the bank to buy presents for loved ones. Christmas is the one time in the year when we normally throw caution to the wind and just blow our budget regardless of the consequences. However, once January rolls around the negative events of this spending begin to set in: higher than expected credit card statements, increased stress, and overall, complete and utter regret over the amount of money spent. So, what steps can you take to avoid overspending this year? Here are five ideas:
Set Your Priorities
What do you hope to achieve this holiday season? Do you want to see family you haven’t seen in awhile? Do you want to travel to a new location? Do you want to take time off work and just rest? It is important that you identify your goals so that you can prioritise what you hope to achieve and have a budget that reflects this.
Set A Budget
If you are prone to overspending be sure to list everything you want to buy, this includes everything from gifts and travel, to food and decorations. Once you have outlined the budget, it is important that you stick to it.
At the height of the shopping season, many of us easily get carried away with our purchases. To avoid overspending, pay for everything by cash whenever you can. If you make an effort to do this, you will avoid fees and interests charged to your card and are less likely to spend more than you should.
Never Buy On Impulse
Always do your research and price compare items before buying them. Never buy on impulse. This holiday season there will be many retail tricks, you know, loyalty cards, retail credit, decoy pricing, endless sales and other incentives. Retail outlets will be working tirelessly to get you to part with your money, though it might be tempting, it is important that you stay strong and stick to your budget.
In order to stick to your budget, you will have to track how much you are spending during the Christmas period. Record the items you buy and compare it with the budget you created. It might seem like a ball-ache but your future January self with surely thank you for it.
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